Saturday, July 12, 2008

Back to the grind...

We are home and gradually getting back into the swing of things. Our week in Florida was a well-needed escape from the craziness of life and we are so happy we were able to make it out there. Neil's family is scattered all over the country, so it was awesome that almost everyone managed to make it (except Ali and Uncle Mike, who we missed). Because the week flew by so quickly a lot of it is a blur to me. In addition, we really didn't do a whole lot besides relax and lounge around, so I can't say there's much to report - not that that's a bad thing! I did take a bazillion pictures, and am including a slideshow at the bottom of this post, but most of my favorites are just below.

Chloe meets the ocean

Beach Babes

I love the way the sun is reflecting off the water


"He's my daddy! And don't you forget it!"

Posing for the camera

"Don't bother me, I'm reading."

Sorry Neil, but I think I've got you beat!

All FOUR of us!

Too cute for words!

Strollin' to the beach to build a sandcastle

Playin' with Grandma Susie

Chloe got stung by a jellyfish the second day we were there. It was clearly an unpleasant experience, but she was a trooper and, despite the discomfort, quite enjoyed showing off her "owies", while reminding everyone over and over (AND OVER) that the jellyfish "got" her. Poor girl!

We were also privileged to catch the Blue Angels' air show the last day of the trip. It was INCREDIBLE! There is definitely an art to what those crazy pilots do, and I could hardly keep my eyes off them as they buzzed over us and twirled around the sky like perfectly synchronized maniacs!

Many of you will also be pleased to know I finally started the Twilight series. I'll have to admit, with all the hype going around, I was almost determined to NOT like these books - I guess it was my attempt to not be part of "the crowd". But man oh man, I don't think it took twenty pages in before I was hooked! I finished Twilight yesterday and have read the first chapter of the second book, New Moon. Stephanie Meyer is an incredible writer! Her style is so arousing and beautiful - I love it! It's been a long time since I have been this immersed in a book. I stayed up two nights in a row until after 1:30am because I couldn't fathom the thought of waiting until morning to find out what was going to happen next! What's funny is Neil's aunt Sue and aunt Ann were also reading the series. Our Twilight "club" was not a planned one, but rather a mere coincidence. Anyway, I am an official fan and am anxious for the movie to come out (5 months from today).

We got in late late last night and have spent most of today sorting through mail, doing laundry, re-stocking our fridge and enjoying the familiar warmth and comfort of our own home. It's good to be back! But it was also a wonderfully memorable trip! Thank you to everyone who made it happen! And thank you, even more, for all your help with Chloe. She had a blast!

Here's a slideshow with pretty much all of the pictures I took last week.



Rebekah said...

It looks like ya'll had a great time!! Thanks for sharing all your adventures!! Hope Chloe is feeling better.

Hooray for jumping on the Twilight bandwagon!! It was worth the wait i'm sure! I've already got the 4th book on order and am also anxiously awaiting the movie in December!! Enjoy!!

Wendy said...

Looks like you had a blast! So glad you guys were able to get away and have fun. You got lots of cute pictures!

stephschmidt said...

Sounds like a practically perfect vacation! (Except for that darn jellyfish that "got" Chloe!) I'm glad you had such a great time! Cute pictures!

Natalie said...

Man I am jealous! It looks like you guys had a lot of fun. Poor Chloe, I hope she is feeling better.
I am totally with you on the twilight series! I read them when they first came out and I was so sucked into them, I didn't even know if I should tell people that I was reading about vampires, and that I was staying up late to finish them. I didn't want the books to end. I can't wait for the movie. Okay I am a dork but I am glad that I'm not the only one who was obsessed with them, or should I say Edward:)

Camille said...

What a fun vacation you had -- I love the photos. You will be happy to know that the other day I finally made your chicken & noodles recipe. You know what an incredible cook I am, so when you said "cayenne pepper to taste" I wasn't sure how much that was, so boy did it end up being hot! We liked it, but needed lots of water on hand. :) Next time I make it I'll use less cayenne pepper.

Paula said...

What a fun trip. Glad you got to go. I am in desperate need of the ocean right about now. Thanks for the pics.
Welcome to the "club".

Jamie Lamb said...

Looks like a great time was had by all. I have also been interested in the Twilight books. I am going to start them when we go to Utah. I know lots of people that just love them. It sounds like you have been enjoying them.

We're Pullin' in the Drive! said...

It looks like you had a wonderful time!! The pictures are great!

We're Pullin' in the Drive! said...
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Dan and Ang said...

What a fun vacation! I love all the pictures! I was the same way with Twilight. I refused to read them for a long time because of the hype, but I read them all really fast and loved them!

Stelene said...

Looks like a fun relaxing vacation, I feel bad for Chloe & the Jellyfish sting:(
Sorry I was gone when you called to borrow my books we were still in Idaho. I'm glad you like them!

Anonymous said...

Well you've done it again - an absolutely precious post with beautiful words and pictures that make me want to crawl right in and grab you all. Your wonderful talent at putting these together just grows and grows. And each time I've looked in it's been to such favorites: "Give Me the Simple Life," "A Wink and a Smile," "What a Wonderful World".... How does it get better than that? So glad you had such a relaxing, wonderful so deserved it!
Love you sooooo...

Cristi said...

Looks like a blast! You're such a cute family!!!

Anonymous said...

Valeri, I just love your family, you are all so beautiful............the pictures of Chloe are priceless, I truly enjoy looking and reading your blog. Can you let me know if you have a picture of the Happy Birthday banner? Manya and I bought all the supplies at Joann's last Saturday and I would really like a visual? Thanks again for alway sharing your beautiful family. Love you, Vicki

Kelly Stoddart said...

Looks like you had a great trip! I love love the ocean. I am glad that you had a great time. Sorry about the jellyfish.

Nells-Bells said...

LOVE Florida. I'm envious of your trip. But looks like you had so much fun! I love Chloe's little red, white and black swim suit. So cute!

I was like you in regards to the Twilight series. I couldn't understand what the hype was about and resisted reading them for a long while. Then I couldn't put them down long enough to shower, sleep or eat. Can't wait for the fourth book to come out in a couple weeks!

Dan & Stef said...

Fun in the sun! Choe looks like she really enjoyed herself, aside from the jellyfish! Glad you had time to relax and enjoy the beach! Oh, and your baby-belly is so cute, but tell Neil he's got some work to do, it's kind of hard to tell who's bigger!